Protons And Neutrons

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Atoms are made up of electrons, protons and neutrons. Protons have positive charge; electrons have negative charge and neutrons are neutral. The magnitude of charges of protons and neutrons is the same. Protons and neutrons are found in the nucleus, while the electrons moves around it. Mass number is addition of the protons and neutrons. Atomic number is the number of protons. [1] The mass of an atom is less than the number we obtain by adding up the masses of all the protons and neutrons. This is the binding energy. The nucleus of an atom determines if it is stable or unstable. The higher the binding energy, the more stable an atom is. Unstable nuclei are radioactive, where they decay until they form stable nuclei. They emit different particles to form more stable daughter nuclei.…show more content…
Alpha particles are composed of 2 protons and also 2 neutrons. It has a plus 2 charge. They are the nucleus of a helium atom. When an unstable nuclei releases an alpha particle, the mass number decreases by 4, and the atomic number decreases by 2. This means that a new element forms due to this emission. Alpha particles are released by relatively large nuclei. [3] It can travel across the air, however does not travel well in solid. Alpha particles are able to ionize the solid that it is passing through. [4] Beta particles occurs when an unstable nuclei emits an electron, which has a negative charge. To conserve the charges in the atom, one of the neutrons in the nucleus spontaneously changes into a proton. The mass number stays the same, however, the atomic number increases by 1. [3] This also means that a new element forms. It can travel through air and compared to alpha particles, they can penetrate through solid matter more, however its ionization ability is less than the alpha particles. [4] The other type of emission is gamma rays. Gamma rays are photons; they are a
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